The week between Christmas and New Year’s Day is normally my favorite week of the year. While there’s definitely a bit of a let down after 4-6 weeks of merry making, it’s a perfect week to settle on that one-little-word for the new year and to take a look back before moving forward.
But this year, I couldn’t settle on one-little-word and felt hesitant to look back at 2016.
It’s almost as if I look back I’m afraid of what I’ll see.
This morning though, my one-little-word found me.
The house was still and quiet as I picked up our half empty mugs from the coffee table. Just as I walked into the kitchen I noticed a left over treat from Christmas Eve sat half eaten.
Why do I feel sad about that?
The corner where the Christmas tree glowed happy for weeks was dark while the tree lay just outside the kitchen window, bare and dying.
The lights on the stair garland were going out and almost all of our battery operated lights and candles went dark days ago.
Every inch of this house that just a week before glowed with expectancy, now looked weary and lifeless .
My next breath was a little heavier than the last.
It’s all in the way you look at things I suppose. Maybe I’m just sad because Christmas is over, maybe it’s the expected holiday let down.
But deep down I knew there was more happening than coming off Christmas.
I’d known it was coming for weeks, this hesitation to move forward into the new year…because, what if life gets dark in 2017, like it did in 2016?
Reluctant to admit it, for months I’d been having an onslaught of what-if questions firing through my brain and the force pulling the trigger was my oldest enemy, the one I fought hard to get rid of…fear.
How could I have missed it? Fear was back bringing with it those crippling companions; negativity, melancholy and cynicism..
In the past I’ve fought long and hard to rid myself of their influence but I’ve gotta tell ya, this morning, right here, trying to keep my balance on this precarious bridge between the old year and the new one, I don’t have the energy to fight.
I thought it best to just say it out loud and clear the air, “God, I just don’t have any fight in me.”
That’s when my eyes landed on this crèche.
A gentle reminder perhaps?And then, as if on cue, I looked out of the window at the precise moment the sun flashed this fantastical flare right into the breakfast room. I grabbed my phone and snapped a picture.
What a mesmerizing glow.
I followed the light, bending down just a little, this is what I saw. For a split second I felt my entire body relax.
Quick another phone picture to help me remember…
…that audacious light cut clear through the melancholy to illuminate my tiny corner of the world.
I followed the light through the screen porch and outside onto the stoop.
Standing there squinting directly into sun, I thought I heard God speak…
“you don’t have to fight the fear…just focus on the light”.
Would that really work God, simply focusing on the light?
“The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”
As for 2017, I’m trusting God to help me focus on that light that shines in darkness. And I went back and forth between focus and light for my one-little-word for 2017 and settled on:
If you choose a word for the year, I’d love for you to share it and tell me a little about how you came to pick your word…
Happy New Year sweet friends xo